The name ‘Tirupati’ conjures up images of God Balaji and evokes a spiritual feeling, but there are many other attractions as well in this city of temples that make it a delightful tourist spot. Located in the Chittoor district of Andhra Pradesh, Tirupati is also one of the most popular pilgrimage centers in the country. Home to many ancient temples and heritage sites, Tirupati was named as the ‘Best Heritage City’ of India in the year 2012-13 by the Central Ministry of Tourism. It is also one of the oldest cities in the country (believed to be established in the 5th century) and finds mention in many ancient texts. Attractions on the Bangalore-Tirupati Route The three different road routes from Bangalore are via NH 75 and 69, via Chennai-Anantapur highway Route and via National Highway 48. The distance is around 250 km and the time taken is around 5-6 hours. While passing through Kolar, you can visit some amazing temples with splendid architecture. The Kotilingeshwara Temple, Kolaramma Temple, and the Someshwara Temple are some of the famous temples in Kolar. Another popular tourist site is the Kolar gold mine. Avani, better known as the Gaya of the South, popular for the places associated with the Ramayana is also on the way. It is believed that Sita gave birth to her twin sons here. There are many temples dedicated to Sita at Avani. Take a view of some amazing waterfalls of Palamaner. Another enchanting place on the way is Madanapalle, a beautiful town blessed with natural beauty. You can get a view of the vast agricultural fields and soak in some fresh air at Horsley Hills. The famous philosopher and guru Jiddu Krishnamurthy was born here. What is a Trip without Some Delicious Food? As you drive from Bangalore to Tirupati, you will find numerous options to satiate your taste buds with local delicacies as well as various other cuisines. Savour Kolkata cuisine at the Kitchen of Joy or the Kolkata Rolls Shop, try the mouth-watering Punjabi food at Sivani New HP or dig into any of the Biryani joints. If coffee is your weakness, then try the aromatic coffee at the Felicita Café or the Café Coffee Day. There is also a Goli Vada Pav if you love this Mumbai street food item. Some of the best restaurants in Tirupati are the Rainbow at Fortune Select, Hyderabad House, the Andhra Spice, the Saptagiri Woodland, Maurya Restaurant, the Idli Factory among others. Tirupati Attractions, Spirituality and More Of course, the primary attraction is the Sri Venkateshwara Temple located in Tirumala, a hill town. The lord is also known as Balaji and Srinivasa. The Tirumala Hills is made of seven peaks, believed to represent the seven heads of Lord Adisesha. The temple is situated on the seventh peak and is one of the most revered temples in India. Take a holy dip at the Swami Pushkarini Lake, believed to be the lake brought down to earth from Vaikuntham, Lord Vishnu’s abode. There are also many other famous temples in Tirupati such as the Sri Govindarajaswami Temple, the Srikalahasti Temple, the Parashurameshwara Temple, the Kondandarama Temple, the ISKCON Temple and many more. A geological wonder you should not miss is the Silathoranam or a rock festoon, a natural arch formed of rocks, at the Tirumala Hills itself. Do visit the Sri Venkateswara National Park which is home to many species of flora and fauna. Children will love a visit to the Sri Venkateswara Zoological Park which houses animals mentioned in ancient epics. The cattle home located at Chandragiri Road is also a must-visit. The temple uses milk from here for its rituals. After the darshan, head to the TTD Gardens spread around 460 acres. The flowers used in the temple are from this garden. Learn about the history of the temple from the amazing exhibits at the Sri Vari Museum. Do not miss the Sri Venkateshwara Dhyana Vignan Mandiram, a museum that displays traditional pooja articles. It is also a meditation center. There is also a Deer Park but home to many other animals as well. Later head to the splendid Talakona Waterfalls blessed with a spellbound view of hills and greenery all around. As you can see, a visit to Tirupati fills you with spirituality, nostalgia, and fun. To experience it, you need a soothing and relaxing trip and what better than a road trip in a chauffeur-driven comfy car?